10 Best Stretches For Basketball Players

 

How To Stretch To Jump Higher: 10 Stretches For Basketball

Are you struggling off the bed the next day after basketball games due to muscle soreness? Are you stretching properly before and after games?  If you’re not, you may risk getting hurt in the game and more soreness. In this article, we go over 1o Best Stretches for basketball players to prevent injury and help you jump higher.

Does stretching help me jump higher?

The answer is yes, it will help you jump higher.

However, stretching is not the main component to help you jump better.  As long as you stretch and your muscles are flexible, you can jump higher to dunk. If it is, many yoga instructors can dominate on the basketball court.

There are a lot of different components that involve helping you increase your vertical jump.  The components are speed, form, power, stability, and as well as flexibility.

Even though stretching will not make you jump higher immediately, but it will affect your ability to jump higher.

Why Do We Need To Stretch For basketball?

Our body is made for movements and basketball utilizes very muscles and tendons in our body each second.  If we don’t properly stretch our muscles, microtrauma will build up and it may lead to microtear in your muscle or tendon.

Why Are You Sore After Basketball?

Athletes feel sore after the basketball game is due to Delay Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).  You typically feel sore within 12-72 hours following your exercises.  The degree of soreness and duration of soreness determine by the intensity of your exercise.

In the past, we mistakenly thought that waste metabolism (lactic acid) build-up from exercise caused soreness after exercise. But we’re wrong, in fact, lactic acid has nothing to do with DOMS.  Lactic acid buildup during aerobic and anaerobic activities, both occurs during strenuous activity.  The buildup of lactic acid will slow down muscle contraction, and lead to decrease performance peak.

Why Are You Sore?

The reason why your muscle sore is due to microtrauma to the muscle. Your muscle went through eccentric (lengthening) and concentric (shortening) muscle actions during activities such as jumping, running down the court, changing speed, passing, and grabbing rebounds.  During such actions, your muscle is under a high force which causes damage to interior muscle structure and connecting tissue.

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Once these microtrauma or tears occur, your body will go to the recovery phase for the muscles involved, and this is when DOMS takes place.

How Can You Help Reduce Muscle Soreness or Decrease DOMS?

Self-massage such as foam roller exercise can help reduce muscle soreness.  Stretching also helps decrease muscle soreness.   Dynamic and static stretching is utilized to help athletes reduce DOMS.

What is the difference between dynamic and static stretching?

Dynamic stretching is a movement base stretching, and static stretching is a traditional way of stretching which you hold in position. Clikc here to find more static and dynamic stretching.

Here is a great example of a dynamic stretch from Kidshealth.org

Why Do We Stretch?

The muscle in our body often time comes in a pair that against each other like a negative pole and a positive pole.  We called this pair antagonistic pairs, and it consists of antagonist muscle and agonist muscle.

How do antagonistic pairs work?

One muscle will contract while other muscles will relax when the muscle takes action. For example, biceps and triceps are antagonistic pairs.

When you do a biceps curl, you contact the biceps to bring the weight up. At the same time, the triceps will relax.  When you bring the weight down, triceps and biceps switch roles. This means the triceps contact and biceps relax.

You may ask, why do I need to know antagonistic pairs when we’re talking about stretching and jump higher?

You need to know this because when you jump, you extend and flex your hip. These muscles work together to help you jump. If the antagonist muscle is tight/inflexible, it will fail to lengthen during a relaxed state.

This will cause resistance to the contacting muscle and it will lead to diminishing power output of the muscle.

What does tight, stiff, or inflexible muscle mean?

It means that your muscle decreases the range motion of the muscle in the actions of jumping.  Your muscle losses the elasticity ability to recoils or bounces back to the original length after the muscle is being stretched through an action.

They will negatively affect the power your muscle will generate during the high jump.

What Are The Important Of Basketball Stretches For Players?

Basketball stretch will help decrease stiffness in your muscles and restore the flexibility in your muscles.

Actively stretching your muscle will help improve range of motion, muscle length, and blood flow to your muscle.

Before you get started, stretching is best to be done after 10-15 warm-up and cooldown time.  You will need a yoga mat to avoid uncomfortable during your stretch.  Try to avoid soft surfaces such as your bed.

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Make sure you breathe through your stretch, DO NOT HOLD YOUR BREATH, DO NOT OVER STRETCH

How To Stretch To Jump Higher For Basketball?

Actively stretching your muscle will help improve range of motion, muscle length, and blood flow to your muscle.   When your muscles are more elastic, which mean your muscle can elongate and contact effective, the muscles generate more explosive power during your vertical jump.

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So stretch daily can will positively affect your muscle when you want to jump higher.

Hip Flexors tightness can affect your ability to jump higher.  Unlock Your Hip Flexors program is special designed to unlock your tight hips and help give you more explosives in your jump.

Check our Full Unlock Your Hip Flexors Review for more detail.

10 Best Stretches For Basketball

1.  PSOAS STRETCH

  • Psoas muscle is one of the major hip flexors
  • Lessen the resistance of the hip extensor muscles when your hip is in hip extension during vertical jump.
  • Here are the steps for Psoas stretch
    • Get down to lunge position with the back knee on the floor
    • Make sure your forward knee line up with your ankle
    • Tighten your buttock (gluteus) muscle
    • Drive your hip forward
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • repeat the above steps on the other side

2. ANTERIOR TIBIALIS STRETCH

  • Anterior tibialis muscle is dorsiflexion and inversion of the foot
  • Lessen resistance to Calf muscle when calf muscle in the flexion position during vertical jump
  • Here are the steps for Anterior tibialis stretch
    • Sit on both heels in kneeling position
    • Slightly lean back to feels stretch in your shins
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds

3. GLUTEUS MAX STRETCH

  • Gluteus max is one of the major hip extensors
  • Lessen resistance to hip flexor when your hip in flexion position during vertical jump
  • Here are the steps for Gluteus max stretch
    • Sit down, cross one foot over the other leg
    • Bring your heel up to your opposite hip
    • Hug your knee by using the opposite elbow over the knee
    • Bring your knee closer to your chest
    • You should feel stretch in you buttock region
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

4. PIRIFORMIS STRETCH

  • Piriformis helps external rotation of the hip and abduction of the thigh
  • Lessen resistance to hip rotators muscles
  • Here are the steps for Lying Piriformis Stretch
    • You will be laying on your back on the floor
    • Cross your left leg over your right leg with left ankle resting on your right knee (you knee should be a figure 4 position)
    • Wrap both hands around your right thigh
    • Slowly left your right foot off the floor and bring your right knee toward your chest
    • You will start to feel stretch on the left buttock (piriformis muscle)
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

5. HAMSTRING STRETCH

  • Hamstring helps Flexion of the knee and extension of the hip
  •  Lessen resistance to hip flexion
  • Here are the steps for the Hamstring stretch
    • Sit on the floor with left leg out straight
    • Bend your right leg to bring your right foot closer to the left inner thigh
    • Reach both arms out toward your left leg
    • You can place both hands on the floor next to your left straight leg or place both hands-on your left foot
    • Bend at your waist as far as you can reach
    • You should feel stretch on your left hamstring
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

6. CALF STRETCH

  • Plantar flexes of the foot flex of the knee
  • Calf stretch will help improve and maintain the flexibility of calf muscle and Achilles tendon
  • Here are the steps for Seated Towel Straight Leg Calf Stretch
    • You will need a towel
    • Sit on the floor with both legs out straight
    • Use a towel at the ball of your foot or at the arches of your foot
    • Gently  pull your foot toward yourself while you maintain straight leg
    • You should feel stretch on the back of your knee
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

7. MID BACK STRETCH – RHOMBOID STRETCH

  • Rhomboid muscle retract and elevate the inner border of your shoulder blade
  • The rhomboid stretch will help improve and maintain the flexibility of your mid-back and maintain a balance upper body during vertical jump
  • Here are the steps for Seated Rhomboid Stretch
    • Sit on a chair with both feet shoulder-width apart
    • Reach your left arm across to the right inner ankle
    • Rest your right elbow on your right knee to maintain balance
    • Gently turn your upper body toward the right side, you can use your right elbow to assist
    • You should feel the stretch on your mid-back between the shoulder blade
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

8. LATISSIMUS DORSI (LAT) STRETCH

  • Lat muscle pulls the humerus down and causes extension and internal rotation of the humerus
  • Lat stretch will lessen the resistance of the humerus in upper reach (if your shoulder have more range of motion in upward reach, it will assist you in your dunk)
  • Here are the steps for Lat Stretch
    • This stretch can be done sitting on the floor or standing
    • Sit up straight or stand up straight
    • Bring left hand behind your head and neck, try your best to place your hand at the center of your neck
    • Make sure your finger is pointing toward the floor
    • Bring your right hand behind your head and reach toward the left elbow
    • You should feel the stretch on the side of your mid back
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    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

9. ADDUCTOR STRETCH

  • Adductor muscles make up the inner thigh muscle which adducts and flexes the thigh
  • It will lessen the resistance of the hip in extension and abduction motion
  • Here are the steps for Adductor Stretch
    • Sit on the floor with both knees apart, bend your knee and bring bottoms of your feet together.
    • Maintain a straight back and keep your chest up
    • Use both hands to grab your feet
    • Bend forward at your hip
    • Gently pull at your feet to assist
    • You should feel the stretch on your inner thigh
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds

10. QUADRICEPS (QUAD) STRETCH

  • Quad muscle is one of the main hip flexors
  • Quad stretch will lessen the resistance during hip extension
  • Here are the steps for Quad Stretch
    • Stand on your feet
    • Bend your left foot and use your left hand to bring your left foot toward your left buttock
    • Make sure your left knee is pointing straight down toward the floor and keep your both knee close together
    • Gently pull your foot closer to your buttock
    • You should feel the stretch on the front thigh
    • Hold in position for 30 seconds
    • You can gently hold on to a chair or a wall to keep your balance
    • Repeat the above steps on the other side

Summary:

Stretching is crucial if you want to jump higher because if actively stretch your muscle daily will help you jump higher.  The more flexible the muscle, the less resistance the opposing force upon the muscles, and the output of the power generated from the muscle will increase.  In other words, you will jump higher if your muscle is flexible.  Try to stretch twice daily to maintain flexible muscle.

Stretching is one of the components to help you jump higher.  But correct jumping exercise will help you build stronger muscle.

WikiHow also has some useful tips on How To Stretch Before Basketball Game.

For more exercise for vertical jump, check our 9 Simple Exercise To Help You Jump Higher.

There are vertical jump programs created by a professional that can help you increase your vertical jump.

Vertical Jump Program:

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